“The factor that probably boosted Paula Radcliffe’s performance more than any other is her ability to regenerate. Her regular massages were to give extra maintenance to the whole body. Above all it’s to give Paula’s muscles and tendons the best chance to recover from the heavy workloads she puts them through” The training secrets of Paula Radcliffe article written by Orlando Pizzolato in TN40 July 2003.
There’s no doubt that training for a marathon is a very vigorous and hard regime. This training is often the hardest runners will ever train with the marathon being their ultimate goal. Bearing this in mind overuse injuries are very frequent and happen all too often. Helping to avoid these injuries will not only aid and speed up muscle recovery, but improve nutritious blood flow and also aid mental preparation leading up to the event.
Here are some further benefits of sports massage to distance runners:
Regular sports massage increases the health of the muscle tissue, encourages blood circulation, allowing fresh oxygen and nutrients to flow increasing muscle recovery. The lymphatic system depends on movement in order to function, unlike the circulatory system, which relies on your heart in order to pump blood through the body. Because your muscles are tight and contracted they can’t get the blood flow they need. The motions used during a massage will not only relax that tension but will then encourage the flow of both blood and lymphatic fluid, moving toxins out of your body and bringing fresh blood flow to your muscles so that they can repair and recover.
Following previous and old injuries you will have a buildup of scar tissue, regular sports massage helps breakup this tight and inflexible tissue. The breakdown of this tissue positively affects the efficiency, performance and recovery of your muscles, ligaments and tendons.
Promoting the release of endorphins sports massage naturally acts as a natural painkiller. This natural affect further helps calm anxiety, maintaining a positive attitude, improving mental toughness and reducing the delayed onset of muscle soreness creating by a vigorous training program.
Regular sport massages will definitely help to keep your body in shape as you prepare for any running event. As well as aiding recovery from any training session, sports massage will help with your performance if used prior to an event. For maximum results having a sports massage 2-3 days prior to any event will aid performance and efficiency of your whole body.